The creators of DIY.org started with a simple, noble purpose: to get kids creating, doing, and learning. To that end, they developed a fun, interactive website where kids (and parents) can learn the nuts and bolts of hundreds of different crafts and skills. DIY is a great site for rainy days, summer vacation endeavors, or anytime you need a little inspiration and guidance for a new project.
Organized by icons, kids can click on different areas according to their interests, such as animation, baking, dancing, even foraging (safely) for mushrooms and wild greens. Just beware-there is a clever prankster section that some of your more mischievous offspring might try a little too freely! The site serves a bit like a clearinghouse of information and how-tos, bringing together the best of the web with links showing how to build a build a $2 bird house, learning to crochet, and making a toy for your pet or your child.
While the projects aren’t in your face regarding their environmental influence, parents and their kids can find activities that add a dollop of green education to playtime. For example, check out basic science experiments such as one that shows how waves are formed by using an empty water bottle and a paint roller pan or recycle a plastic bottle into a plastic bottle greenhouse for plants. Each of these activities or “challenges” allow kids to delve as deeply as they want into a particular topic and learn about it extensively, or to simply dabble in a bunch of varied interests.
Ranging from the fanciful to the practical to the parent-supervision definitely required, DIY’s challenges promote active, experiential learning in a fun, affirming way that is sure to get kids thinking, dreaming, and excited to explore the world in new ways! The creative process starts when kids choose an animal and a nickname as their DIY identity and keeps going throughout the huge number of challenges and areas.
DIY encourages interaction and a virtual DIY community by asking kids to take and load pics of their challenges when they have completed them. Kids can look at what others have done for inspiration. They can also earn virtual badges by completing a certain number of challenges. We love how the site makes even the smallest activities fun and collaborative: the club maker area encourages kids to work together to design a club logo, make a flag, and create a club ritual (such as a crazy handshake). So the next time anyone even thinks “I have nothing to do,” direct them to this site and prepare for all sorts of DIY adventures.